Rising Sons Commit To Chiangmai Golf Classic

Tue 26 Feb 2013

Rising Sons Commit To Chiangmai Golf Classic

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Chiangmai, Thailand, February 26: Japanese stars Tetsuji Hiratsuka, Kenichi Kuboya and last season’s Asian Tour Rookie of the Year Masanori Kobayashi have signed up for the inaugural US$750,000 Chiangmai Golf Classic presented by PTT next month.
The talented trio will join Asian history-maker Y.E. Yang of Korea and Thai legend Thongchai Jaidee in the Asian Tour’s newest tournament which will be held at the impressive Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai from March 28 to 31, 2013.
The Chiangmai Golf Classic is supported by PTT Group Company Limited, one of the largest corporations in Thailand, while other premier sponsors include PTT Public Company Ltd, Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand, Advanced Info Service Plc, Siam Commercial Bank PCL, Tourism Authority of Thailand, Provincial Government of Chiangmai, Chiangmai Provincial Administrative Organisation, CAT Telecom Public Company Ltd, TOT Public Company Ltd, Thai Airways International Public Company Ltd, Thai Beverage Public Company Limited, Samart I-mobile PCL , Loxley Wireless Co Ltd, Forth Corporation Public Company Ltd, J.R.W Utility Plc, Standard Tour Co Ltd, Advanced Information Technology Public Company Ltd, Fenix Apparel and Accessories Co Ltd and Sports Authority of Thailand.
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The 41-year-old Hiratsuka, who is a six-time winner in Japan, is one of the most successful Japanese players on the Asian Tour, which will be celebrating its 10th season throughout 2013. After earning his Tour card from Qualifying School in 2009, the powerful Japanese ace went on to win three tournaments in 2010 to finish third on the Order of Merit and subsequently claimed a fourth title on the region’s premier Tour in 2011.
A neck injury slowed down his charge last season but Hiratsuka is all geared up for another successful campaign ahead and will be targeting the Chiangmai Golf Classic, which is a full-field Asian Tour tournament, as his two wins in Asia were achieved at the Queen’s Cup and Black Mountain Masters in Thailand three years ago.
“I’m very comfortable playing in Thailand and I’m looking forward to the Chiangmai Golf Classic. I was struggling with a neck injury last year but it has become a lot better now, so I hope to start playing well again in 2013,” said Hiratsuka, who finished 96th on the rankings last season.
Kobayashi produced a memorable rookie season on the Asian Tour. After earning his card from Qualifying School, he won the Asia Pacific Panasonic Open, jointly sanctioned with the Japan Golf Tour, on home soil and added two other top-10s to finish fourth on the Order of Merit.
He signed up for the Asian Tour after watching Hiratsuka achieve success in the region and is now looking forward to adding a second career title at the Chiangmai Golf Classic.
“I’ve enjoyed travelling to different countries in Asia last year. I’ve learned a lot, especially playing with the top players which was very good experience for me,” said Kobayashi.
“My goal this season is to win one title on the Asian Tour and another title in Japan. I’m looking forward to visiting Chiangmai for the first time.”
Kuboya holds six Tour victories in Japan, enjoying his biggest career victory when he triumphed in the Japan Open last season. The 40-year-old has also plied his trade on the Asian Tour in the past few seasons.
The Chiangmai Golf Classic presented by PTT is primed to extensively promote Chiangmai, which is located in northern Thailand, as a top golfing and tourist destination through the four days of live broadcasts on the Asian Tour’s global television platform, which reaches over 200 countries and 650 million homes.
The Chiangmai Golf Classic will be a 72-hole strokeplay tournament showcasing 144 players with the leading 99 Asian Tour players featuring in the elite field alongside 10 players from the top-200 of the Official World Golf Ranking, 20 players from Thailand and 15 sponsor’s invitations.
The Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai, designed by Ron M. Garl, is located in a valley between mountain ranges in the heart of the San Kampaeng natural forests and boasts of natural beauty.
About the Asian Tour
In 2013, the Asian Tour will celebrate a momentous milestone with its 10th season. As the official sanctioning body for professional golf in Asia, the Asian Tour leads the development of golf across the region, enhancing the careers of its members while maintaining a commitment to the integrity of the game. The Asian Tour, through its membership of the International Federation of PGA Tours, is the only recognised pan-Asian professional golf tour in Asia. This unique feature positions the Asian Tour at the pinnacle of professional golf in Asia; providing its events with Official World Ranking status. Tour Partners include Abacus (Official Apparel Partner), BlackBerry (Official Communications Partner), Inetol Headwear (Official Headwear Supplier), Singha Beer (Official Beer), Srixon (Official Ball), Starwood Hotels and Resorts (Official Hotels and Resorts) and Rolex (Official Timekeeper). The Asian Tour has offices in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. Also, visit us at www.asiantour.com, www.facebook.com/asiantourgolf, www.twitter.com/asiantourgolf, www.youtube.com/theasiantour and www.weibo.com/asiantourgolf
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